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The Counter Reformation: A History And Analysis Of The Impact On France

2220 words - 9 pages

Through out the course of human history, there are things that occur that cause change. Change that incites a movement, change that causes people to rise up, change that lights a fire to the deepest part of the human soul. But as we all know, to any effect there has to be something that caused that cause. Throughout history there have been many events that have occurred that have shaped the way we view our lives, but the impact the people at the period must have felt would be monumental. There is a period in history that incited much change in our world and that is the time period that we have come to know as the Catholic Counter-Reformation. This period of time prior to the Thirty Year’s War was a direct effect of the Protestant Reformation and was a revival of sorts of Roman Catholicism and a huge reform movement from within the Church’s foundation in Rome that spread throughout all of Europe. This impact is one that would ripple throughout the ages, one that would change the course of the Roman Catholic Church’s history.
Like I stated up, for every effect there is a cause. The Catholic Reformation is no different to that fact. The almost direct cause of the Counter-Reformation was the Protestant Reformation that swept quickly through Europe. This was caused mainly by a Catholic priest by the name of Martin Luther. In 1517, he nailed the “95 Theses” as they have come to be referred as. This piece of writing pointed out the wrongs the Church had been committing by the selling of indulgences to pay for one’s sins and to also fund a huge construction project that the Roman Church was paying for. Little did this priest know the trouble that he would cause. He was simply looking for a change in the church, but this resulted in Reformers, as they came to be known as, springing up all over Europe with different ideas and beliefs. Martin Luther went on to write his own translation of the Bible. Along with other reformers, he promoted that all men, not just the priest, could interpret Scripture for himself. He started to preach faith alone through grace alone was the key to salvation, a different belief than the one held by the Catholic Church that one is saved by faith and works. Eventually, the Roman Catholic Church split into two sects, the Protestants and the Roman Catholics. Fights all across Europe arose, different factions rose to fight for what they believed, and the main cause had seemed to be forgotten... the reformation of the Catholic Church that needed to be so badly done.
Early calls for reforming had been being heard since the Renaissance period of history. The reasoning behind this was because of the worldly attitudes and many different policies that had been adopted by the clergy and the Renaissance popes during this period. Many different men and women of the church started their own religious groups within the church, one such group being known as the Jesuits. These smaller factions were not just these small groups; these...

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